Every surgery requires the use of surgical instruments, and many require sponges, gauze, caps, retractors, and surgical clamps. In different hospitals, the surgical team uses different ways of accounting for sponges that are put into the body to make sure they are all removed before the surgery is completed. A scrub nurse usually keeps count of how many sponges are being put inside the body. Although there are strict protocols to be followed, surgeons and nurses may not always follow the protocols exactly. In some cases, a nurse may miscount or get distracted, and a foreign object may be left behind in the body, sticking to the abdomen or bowel or other organ. A foreign object left behind can result in serious harm, such as post-operative or organ damage. Usually, further surgery is necessary to remove the object. If you have been harmed because a foreign object was left inside your body during surgery, you should consult an experienced medical malpractice attorney at Feizy Law Office. We have advocated for Dallas residents and other patients in pursuing compensation from health care professionals.Holding a Health Care Professional Accountable for a Foreign Object
Foreign object cases generally do not occur if there was no negligence by the surgical team. Often, patients do not realize that a foreign object was left inside them until the object causes health problems. Rarely does a surgical team admit that it made a mistake. Even when the foreign object is found, the surgical team may deny liability or try to find ways to avoid or reduce liability.
Doctors usually have capable lawyers, and so it is important that you also retain an experienced medical malpractice attorney. Shortly after filing a complaint against a health care provider, a plaintiff needs to file an appropriate expert's report. The expert or experts must be qualified to opine on issues such as the standard of care for health care providers performing the type of surgery that was performed, protocols, whether there was a deviation from the standard of care, causation, and the injuries that were suffered. A health care professional is qualified to provide an opinion on a causal relationship between a deviation from the standard of care and the plaintiff’s damages only if he or she is a physician and is otherwise qualified to provide an opinion under the Texas evidentiary rules.
The Texas Rules of Evidence require an expert to have skill, knowledge, experience, training, or education on a specific issue the court must consider in order to be qualified to give the court an opinion. The expert's opinions must be grounded in the facts of the particular case and not speculative. Generally, it is best to retain an attorney as soon as you realize there may be some problem with your surgery because it can take time for an attorney to review the medical records, find an appropriate expert, and have a report generated that meets the pre-suit requirements.
The Texas Supreme Court has recognized that foreign objects are a distinctive type of case. Ordinarily, you only have two years from the date of the malpractice to bring suit. However, those who suffer injuries because a sponge was left behind have a reasonable opportunity to discover their injuries and sue even if the two-year limitations period has run. Nonetheless, there is a 10-year statute of repose, after which no medical malpractice claim may be made, even if the discovery occurred more than 10 years after the surgery.Seek Compensation for Your Injuries by Enlisting a Dallas Attorney
People in the Dallas area who have been hurt by negligent medical professionals can consult the injury lawyers at Feizy Law Office to discuss the details of their case and explore their options. Call Feizy Law Office at (214) 651-8686 or contact us via our online form to arrange a free consultation. We also represent injured patients in Fort Worth, Garland, Arlington, Plano, and Irving, among other cities.